The internet has significantly influenced many aspects of our lives, including business; it has created a “digital economy,” which researchers estimate as worth $11.5 trillion, or 15.5% of global GDP. A study by the Internet Association in 2018 revealed that the internet supports 19 million American jobs in some way. The study also showed that the internet accounted for about 10% of the nation’s GDP, making it the fourth-largest economy sector. Statistics like this reveal how widespread the internet’s influence on business really is and many experts predict this influence will only increase.
Entrepreneurs looking to benefit from this influence will have to be alert to various trends. Do you want to know more about what business aspects the internet has changed and how you can use these changes? Here are four areas you must consider.
- Advertising and Marketing
Promoting goods and services in today’s world is heavily shaped by the internet; having a website and active social media channels are now critical to every business’s branding in the world. Ironpaper states that 93% of shoppers are influenced by social media. Additionally, Verisign’s survey revealed that 83% of businesses with websites had a competitive advantage over their counterparts without websites. Therefore, you should endeavour to reach your customer base through more digital spaces than traditional marketing avenues to remain relevant in this age.
- Business research
A KPMG survey published on Forbes in 2015 showed that 92% of top-level executives rely on data and analytics to improve their marketing. Half of U.S. enterprises also reported a sales increase due to using data and analytics. Consumer data and market trends have always been central to the growth of businesses. Today, the internet is a reliable repository of online databases, think tank predictions, university research, and top business publications, all containing valuable information that you must use to have a competitive advantage in the business world.
- Customer service
According to American Express, Millennials will pay 21% more to conduct business with excellent customer service companies. Also, as per a Microsoft study, 56% of global customers have stopped doing business with a company due to bad customer service. In this online age, customer service has evolved through ‘chat-bots’ who provide fast and helpful information to clients in real-time through social media and websites. Since customers are the main focus of every business, consider digitizing your customer service experience to increase company-customer engagement, and boost your business.
Statista indicates that in 2019, online retail of goods generated $343.15 billion and is estimated to increase to about $476.5 billion in 2024. Modern consumers depend heavily on the internet to make purchases. Last year, Forbes reported that e-commerce giant Amazon had usurped Walmart to the title of the world’s biggest retailer, showing that online shopping is revolutionizing the commerce industry. It would be best if you also harnessed the E-commerce industry potential to position your business in a way that makes the buying and selling of products and services with customers happen mainly via the internet.
The internet is rapidly shaping businesses, and you certainly cannot be left out; make the most of it with one or more of the above-mentioned areas.